“Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth — more than ruin, more even than death. Thought is subversive and revolutionary, destructive and terrible, thought is merciless to privilege, established institutions, and comfortable habits; thought is anarchic and lawless, indifferent to authority, careless of the well-tried wisdom of the ages. Thought looks into the pit of hell and is not afraid.”
- Bertrand Russell, from "Why Men Fight"
“What we call civilized consciousness has steadily separated itself from the basic instincts. But these instincts have not disappeared. They have merely lost their contact with our consciousness and are thus forced to assert themselves in an indirect fashion. This may be … physical symptoms … neurosis … various incidents … moods … unexpected forgetfulness … or mistakes of speech.”
I remember your collarbone, forming the tiniest
satellite dish in the universe, your smile
as the place where parallel lines inevitably crossed.
I remember your eyes: fifty attack dogs on a single leash,
how I once held the soft audience of your hand.
I’ve been ignored by prettier women than you,
but none who carried the heavy pitchers of silence
so far, without spilling a drop.
“I had been struck by the analogy between neurosis and romanticism. Romanticism was truly a parallel to neurosis. It demanded of reality an illusory world, love, an absolute which it could never obtain, and thus destroyed itself by the dream.”